From: John Stanton
Sent: Saturday, March 12, 2016 10:38 AM
To: Velz, Peter T. EOP/WHO
Subject: travel pool report 3
At 10:05 former ambassador Ron Kirk took the stage to introduce POTUS to the crowd of Obama supporters gathered for the DNC fundraiser. Full transcript of POTUS' remarks to come as usual. Here's some highlights.
Kirk kicked it off by asking for a round of applause for Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, who has indicated she may retire. "What a great leader," Kirk said of Johnson.
Obama took the stage at 10:13, sans tie but wearing a blazer, to loud but not raucous applause.
"I love me some Ron Kirk, I really do. It's true I love Matrice more," Obama said of Kirk and his wife. The president also praised Rep. Johnson, whom he said "always has my back."
Obama also gave a shout out to "hall of famer, a good friend and really pretty good dancer Emmitt Smith."
"We're here today because we know how deeply elections matter," Obama said at the top of his remarks. Both he and the crowd are considerably more subdued than Friday's event in Austin. POTUS' speech also seems to be an abridged version of his Austin remarks.
Obama did, however, repeat his "One eyed dog in a smokehouse" effort at sounding Texas folksy from Friday.
Obama gave at least one oblique reference to Friday's violent Trump rally, when during his now standard call for politicians to be focused on bettering America and "certainly not violence against other Americans or excluding them. We're a better country than that."
His attacks on Trump and Republicans was almost identical to his remarks Friday, though they lacked the energy he displayed in Austin. One difference was an attack on Ted Cruz, whose rhetoric, Obama argued, has been as bad as Trump's. "you read what he says. It's no more rooted in reality than some of these other statements," Obama said.
During Obama's riff on trying on a man's black cowboy hat during the 2008 election, a man in the audience stood up and offered his own black cowboy hat to the president. That hat looks good on you brother," Obama joked, saying he may try it on after his speech.
"Naw, I can't do that," Obama in response to a man who yelled "four more years."
"Does anybody know what the other side is for? I don't ... they don't. That's why they're selling wine," Obama said to laughs. "Has anyone bought that wine? I want to know what that wine tastes like. I mean, come on, you know that's some 5 dollar wine. They slap a label on it, charge ya 50 dollars and tell ya it's the greatest wine ever. Come on! Sellin' wine."
Obama wrapped up around 10:38 and began working the room briefly before exiting.
DC Bureau Chief